What is the Best Siding for a Sanibel Island Home?

What is the Best Siding for a Sanibel Island Home? When buying a Southwest Florida home or remodeling one, you want to ensure the home is built with quality materials to withstand the elements. You don't want to spend money on something that is not structurally sound which will lead to spending more money to fix it sooner than anticipated. For this reason, many people ask what a good siding material for homes in southwest Florida is. This is especially true on Sanibel Island where homes are close to the salt water and exposed to weather that can take a toll on a home. As a large percentage of homes have been rebuilt on the island recently, what a home is constructed with and how a home is constructed, is a key point of interest. 

Some materials are better than others when it comes to a Sanibel Island home. No material is 100% perfect or full proof, they all have their good attributes and a few drawbacks. Let's look at the most popular types of siding to use on a Sanibel Island home to help you become more knowledgeable in your homebuying process or to help you decide how to re-side your Sanibel Island home. 

Pros and Cons of Different Siding Materials

Stucco and Fiber Cement

Many homes in southwest Florida have been built with stucco exteriors for several years. Stucco is popular for its ability to retain an interior temperature and to uphold against outside weather elements. Recently fiber cement siding has been gaining ground in popularity as the overall highly durable siding material on Sanibel homes. Both stucco and fiber cement offer durability, insulation properties, fire resistance, termite intrusion resistance, UV ray resistance, and more.

Stucco has an expected lifespan of around 75 years when well cared for and tends to stand up to harsh weather such as hurricanes much better compared to other siding materials. Stucco is a material made of cement, lime, and sand. Stucco became popular for its durability and low level of maintenance needs.

Fiber cement which has become increasingly popular and almost outpaces stucco as the highest quality in durability is very similar to stucco but is also mixed with 8 to 10% wood fiber to give it extra flexibility and durability. You may have heard fiber cement siding referred to as hardy board siding. This material has gained popularity for its water resistance making it more protective in southwest Florida than stucco, especially in areas surrounded by water like Sanibel Island. With time stucco can tend to be prone to moisture-driven cracking and can be difficult to paint. This is why fiber cement siding has become a viable alternative but both materials are on the costly end.

Aluminum and Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding became popular for its affordability and seemingly low maintenance. Vinyl is well known for its ability to stand up to water and pests as well as fire. Another material commonly associated with these attributes is aluminum but it is one of the most expensive siding materials. Both of these materials can be difficult to repair if they sustain damage. Vinyl siding can be resistant to high winds making it a desirable option in areas like South Florida but is not completely bend or crack-proof. It is also resistant to scratching indenting which is a nice attribute as compared to other materials especially when compared to aluminum which can scratch or dent easily. Both aluminum and vinyl siding can be troublesome to repair if damaged.

Vinyl also became popular as it does not need to be frequently painted to continue to give a great look to the exterior of a home however it does fade with time and extreme sun exposure. Vinyl and aluminum siding are perhaps the avoidable siding choices when considering your Sanibel island home.

Wood and Synthetic Wood Siding Materials

A majority of American homes have wood siding. While it is very popular in other areas of the country it might not be the most durable of siding materials for coastal homes in south Florida. The cost of wood siding is dependent upon the type of wood and the style of siding used. Wood siding often requires more upkeep and maintenance especially when it comes to painting a home. Wood siding may be the least likely to uphold in a hurricane depending upon its type and installation. The life expectancy of wood siding is around 30 years for a home. Some wood is more durable than others but wood's biggest enemy is moisture so it can be difficult to maintain in areas of high humidity and salty air like Sanibel Island.

Synthetic wood siding is made from strands of wood and resin. It is a response to providing a wood siding material that could better stand up to damage from pests and moisture. Synthetic wood siding is more durable than natural wood siding and can provide better insulation in the interior of a home. Synthetic wood siding products offer a much higher insulation quality than you will find in many other siding materials except for stucco and fiber cement. Synthetic wood siding is more durable than natural wood siding but it still requires a regular exterior painting much the same as natural wood siding does.

When it comes to choosing a siding for a Sanibel Island home stucco and fiber cement are still the leading materials. They cost more but it is worth the investment. Finding a home made of these materials will come at a higher fair market value but it is for a good reason. Other materials are still of good quality and worth looking into, but it is always a good idea to make sure that you have a trustworthy professional home inspection performed to ensure that any home siding is in great condition when you purchase a Sanibel home.

For information on available properties in Sanibel, I am here to help. I am a highly experienced local Sanibel real estate agent who is here to help you find a Sanibel home that meets your search criteria in the ideal location to purchase a property you will love. Contact me anytime with any Sanibel real estate needs for both buying and selling Sanibel homes.

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